Saturday, February 29, 2020

BOOK BLAST & REVIEW - 2037: The End of Tolerance by Luke Mauerman

BOOK BLAST


Book Title: 2037: The End of Tolerance
Author: Luke Mauerman
Publisher: Beekman Place Editions
Cover Artist: Mark Anderson
Release Date: May 21, 2019
Genre/s: Gay, Science Fiction, Dystopian
Trope/s: When Gay Becomes Illegal
Themes: Culture War, Future Dystopia, Gay Love, Technology
Heat Rating: 2 flames 
Length: 235 pages

It is a standalone book.



Buy Links - Available on Kindle Unlimited






When Gay Becomes Illegal

Blurb 


A novel about life in a United States gone mad, where the government falls apart, California secedes from the union, and Liberals and Conservatives finally battle each other in the streets. It's the Culture War, and it's coming. Find out what to do when men and women start to get caged up just for being gay; when climate disasters unfold and wreck the economy; when the world falls apart once and for all. It's 'Atlas Shrugged,' but in reverse.

Stephe Stafford, embroiled in this conflict, hopes to preserve his sanity—and even finds love along the way. In 2037 we watch Stephe, orphaned in the Great San Francisco Earthquake of 2022, grow up and even blossom into his own.

New technologies and old politics weave together to form amazing possibilities and hopes—and certain dangers, too. Read about the fate of America as we move into a chilling new future. Find out what can we do when the world goes awry.

Review 


My Rating - 4 Stars!

2037: The End of Tolerance is one of those rare books that I am constantly talking about since reading it. This Luke Mauerman novel is as riveting as it is terrifying. 

It all starts with an earthquake in 2022, in which Steph loses his parents. From there's it's just downhill for the boy and the country. This is a coming of age story, as Steph grows up and explores his sexuality. The reader is there to witness Steph's coming out and his first times, all admist the rise in homophobia and racism.  

It definitely hits on the political climate we are currently in, as the racial and homophobic issues get worse each year. Thus creating the climate that is set in this awful author created world in 2037. Basically, read this if you're interested in a story of what could happen if the hatred in politics continue. If that's not your thing, skip this one. Me? I love it. 

The author also explores what may happen with technology and climate change, which is interesting for sure. 

The writing is well done, sharp and with a good flow. All sex is fade to black. I wish I could say this is a insanely author created world, but damn, if it doesn't scare you, I don't know what will. It's unfortunately a strong indicator of what can happen to us.

2037: The End of Tolerance is not a romance. This Luke Mauerman is a novel of what could unfortunately happen if homophobia and racism continues to flourish. 



Excerpt

Republican President Mitch Kellum, elected in 2028, urged calm, but the damage was done. Calls for the election to be overturned sprang from all parts of the country. Kellum denied any wrongdoing. It was the Russians and the Chinese, he claimed, determined to destabilize the U.S.

Democrats had lost all remaining political power and the conservative U.S. Supreme Court upheld the election in predictable fashion, six to three.

It was like a bomb had gone off. Protests turned to riots. Far-right fundamentalists took to the streets in support of the election, and faced off with teeming hordes of furious liberals. A nation that had been savagely divided, blue against red, liberal against conservative for the past thirteen years, would eventually fall into violence. It finally happened in Philadelphia on November 9, 2030. Rioting liberals clashed with Freedom Fighters, neo-Nazis, and Proud Boys on Market Street at the beautiful Philadelphia City Hall building. Fisticuffs, brawls, burning cars. Shots rang out. The police, caught in the middle, fell apart; each officer defected to his or her side of the political divide and joined the fight.

The Culture War had begun.

Battlements were hastily built in the streets of Washington, DC, New York, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, and Minneapolis. It was bedlam. The streets became littered with bodies as street fights broke out: Red versus Blue, Conservative versus Liberal.

People fled the cities only to find skirmishes in the suburbs. Ikea parking lots were battle zones. A Home Depot in Enid, Oklahoma, was burnt to the ground. Fires started everywhere.

The country spasmed in violence, hand to hand, block by block. After thirteen years of political loggerheads, the center could no longer hold. Any attempt at civil discourse fell on deaf ears. It was us against them, everywhere.

A typical confrontation would be as follows: Unarmed Liberals vastly outnumbered armed Freedom Fighters. They'd go toe-to-toe in the streets, yelling and waving signs in confrontation. Fist fights would break out. But then someone would get mad, grab their gun, and start shooting. Others would join in and the unarmed protesters would flee back behind barricades of cars, buses, dumpsters and buildings, leaving the dead and wounded in the street. It was like a form of trench warfare—and this was played out in cities and towns across the country. Attack and retreat. Attack and retreat. And anger—people were incredibly angry. They fought tooth and nail, neighbor against neighbor, family member against family member.

In San Francisco the tens of thousands of liberals lining Market Street day after day eventually found themselves being bludgeoned by Freedom Fighters. Skirmish lines fell into place along the main street and shots were fired. Freedom Fighters were hopelessly outnumbered though and, despite having guns, were quickly overpowered by the throngs of San Franciscans. They fled.

Stephe was there with Nicole. They'd come up from Harrison Street to take part in the demonstration that day. Nicole wound up hitting a neo-Nazi with her shoe, bloodying his face while Stephe—feeling nothing but cold rage—just took his rifle and hit him with it.

The National Guard had to be mobilized to quell the riots, and still it wasn't enough. The U.S. Army and the Marines were added and took to the streets with water cannons and tear gas.

Finally the main fights in the bigger cities were quelled by force. After six bloody days the spasm ended. Thousands were dead. Many more thousands were arrested by the military and taken to separate camps, red and blue, for disturbing the peace and inciting violence.

Thus began a new Cold War as Americans could no longer speak to one another.







About the Author 

Luke Mauerman is a former columnist for Bear and 100% Beef Magazines, and is well into his trilogy of books on time travel. He majored in English from the University of Washington in Seattle and currently resides in Palm Springs.


Author Link












Friday, February 28, 2020

COVER REVEAL - Up Close and Personal (Auckland Med # 3) by Jay Hogan






Title: Up Close and Personal 
Author: Jay Hogan
Series: Auckland Med, Book 3
Genre: MM Romance
Release Date: 3/12/20


BLURB

DETECTIVE MARK KNIGHT has a serious problem—one that comes in the form of Auckland Med’s brand-new forensic pathologist. Six feet of delicious blond-haired, scary smart, stern and disapproving hotness—DR EDWARD R NEWTON.

The man is miles out of Mark’s league; completely opposite in almost every way, and shockingly immune to Mark’s flirtations. Mark should just let him go. But the alluring doctor has taken residence in Mark’s brain and is messing with his life’s plan—in particular Mark’s determination to skirt attachments and all the self-absorbed drama that goes with them.

Mark has spent two years watching his friends drop like flies to the white picket virus, only to suddenly find himself hankering for a hammer and some white paint. Edward, however, doesn’t want a bar of Mark’s roguish charm.

But it’s not like Mark can avoid the sexy pathologist—death brings them together on a regular basis. So when a string of murders threatens both their lives and sends them into hiding, something has to give.


RELEASE BLITZ & REVIEW - For What It's Worth (#lovehim #5) by S.M. James

RELEASE BLITZ


Book Title: For What It’s Worth
Author: S. M. James
Publisher: May Books
Cover Artist: Story Styling Cover Designs
Release Date: February 27, 2020
Genre/s: YA LGBT romance
Trope/s: Opposites attract, pseudo love triangle, friends to lovers, fish out of water
Themes: Polyamory, coming of age
Heat Rating: 2 flames
Length: 88 000 words/350 pages
It is a standalone story.





Buy Links - Available on Kindle Unlimited






They say there are no rules in love, but will three be a crowd?


Blurb

Rory GarcĂ­a is terrible at making choices.

Dating Micah has been the best decision Rory’s ever made. Micah calms his wild side by bringing Rory back down to earth. They’re perfect for each other.
But when Rory’s Australian crush randomly shows up to stay with him, Rory’s torn between the boyfriend he maybe loves, and the guy he thought he was over.

Micah Holtz is the most loyal boyfriend in history.

Since the day Micah first saw Rory, he fell hard. There’s never been a moment where Micah’s doubted his feelings and when they finally start to date, Micah plans to hold on with both hands.
But then Justin arrives from Australia and Micah finds his single-minded attention starting to slip…

Justin Anderson has a plan for everything.

Showing up on Rory’s doorstep is the most adventurous thing Justin’s ever done. He’s lowkey sick with nerves, but knowing Rory’s there makes it all worth it. Until he finds out Rory has a boyfriend. Which was never part of the plan.
Suddenly Justin’s back to his usual game of second guessing everything, including Rory’s flirting and Micah’s lingering looks.

When Micah’s childhood haunt is set to be torn down, the three of them join forces to try to save the historic building. But will the teamwork add cracks to an already unstable friendship, or bring them closer than they ever imagined?


Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!

SM James' fifth book in the #lovehim series, For What It's Worth, is an enjoyable new adult menage romance. 

The love triangle conflict is wonderfully done, easily drawing the reader into all the emotions involved. Basically, Rory loves his boyfriend Micah, and Micah loves Rory. But when Justin is reunited with Rory, Rory can't deny he loves Justin too, and Justin is definitely in love with Rory. 

This is the story of three young men fighting their feelings and discovering polyamory. The way all three men comes together, and maturely handle their situation is inspiring. 

Justin's character is wonderfully complex. He's brilliant, but suffers from severe social anxiety. He's a wounded man, unable to be comfortable with someone touching him. The way Rory and Micah help calm the anxious Justin is phenomenal.

I love the author's writing style. The characters fully come alive, leaving the reader intrigued throughout their heartfelt journey.

For What's It's Worth is a great addition to the #lovehim series. I am enjoying this SM James and definitely recommend it. 




Excerpt

Justin pretends to shudder. At least, I think he’s pretending. “Kill me now.”

“Nah, you’re way too pretty to kill.”

Those mismatched eyes meet mine and we’re just a pair of awkward losers staring at what we can’t have. I should probably take my words back and make out like ha ha jokes but I’m not joking. I spent way too many late nights thinking about that face … before Micah, of course.

Justin being here serves to remind me that the world is a fucking big place.

We switch off the TV and I scoot closer, craving him like fucking air and I still can’t work out exactly why. “You’ll be totally fine. Just be yourself. You won Micah over easy enough, and me, and Ari.”

He scrunches up his little nose. “Sure, my friendship group has grown to three, what an achievement.”

“Excuse me Mr. Sarcasm, but how long was that group at one for?”

Justin doesn’t answer, just screws his lips up to the side like he gets my point.

“Exactly. A fucking long time. And now you’ve tripled that number in just a few short months, like are you kidding? You’re on a roll, you charismatic piece of shit.” The name calling comes naturally to me, and at first I worry Justin won’t take it in the affectionate way I mean, but he cracks a smile that brings up those little dimples on either side of his chin and damn I want to touch them. “Plus Ruby and Grace think you’re the cutest thing ever.”

Justin shakes his head like he doesn’t believe a word coming from my mouth but he’s still smiling. “Just Alexis to go then.”

“With how much I talk about you she already thinks you’re best friends so there’s nothing to worry about there.”

“Talking about me, hey?” He’s leaning against the back of the couch, head tilted toward me. The teasing that flickers across his face is just beautiful. His hazel eye is on this side and I love how he looks slightly different depending on which side I look at him from.

“When I got back from Australia, Alexis literally banned your name from conversations.”

His lips twitch. “You’re lying.”

“I’m not. She was allowed to punch me every time I said it.”

“How many bruises did you get?”

“All down both arms.” I smirk. “Totally worth it.”

A laugh hiccups from him and he opens his mouth to say something, then stops.

“No, no.” I lean in closer. “You’re not allowed to over think, remember? Whatever you were going to say, say it.”

That gorgeous tint starts to rise on his cheeks as he swallows.

“Say it or I’ll tickle you.” I’m totally lying, but I wish I wasn’t. Every time he’s around I’m itching to get my hands on him and if that means tickling him like we’re in middle school, I’ll fucking do it. But what I won’t do is make him uncomfortable.

He buries his face into his hands. “Now you’ve made it into a thing.”

“And I’ll keep making it into a bigger thing until you tell me.” The fact he’s avoiding it just makes me even more curious. And once I get my mind stuck on something, I’ve got to know.

His hazel eye peeks out at me. “I was just going to say …” His side expands as he takes a deep breath. “That if I had any friends, they would have banned your name too.” His face disappears into his hands again, but he can’t hide how his neck goes all read. “See? Dumb.”

I slide closer, until I cross that invisible barrier he keeps locked in place and lean down so my face is near his. “Justin?”

“What?”

“Look at me.”

He hesitates a second before he lifts his face, sucking in a sharp breath when he realizes how close I am. Something skitters across my chest as he pins me with his rare eye contact. I’m barely aware of my lips moving until I hear my own words.

“Nothing you ever say is dumb.”








About the Author 

S.M. James writes books for teens about squishy sweet characters.

​While not writing, SM is a readaholic and Netflix addict who regularly lives on a sustainable diet of chocolate and coffee.

​​Unapologetically dishing out HEAs for LGBTQ characters.



Social Media Links





Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

1 x $30US Amazon gift card (AU or US)

2 x paperbacks international (Any from the #lovehim series)

3 x eBooks international (Any from the #lovehim series)














Thursday, February 27, 2020

RELEASE BLITZ & REVIEW - Jeff, Karma, and Me by Jere' M. Fishback



Title: Jeff, Karma, and Me
Author: Jere’ M. Fishback
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: February 24, 2020
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 90400
Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQIA+, contemporary, new adult, gay, bi, absent parent, mental illness, campground, Florida, Indiana, college students, multiple partners, coming out

Add to Goodreads

Synopsis

Twenty-year-old college student, Jakub Mazur, is a loner consumed by feelings of helplessness due to his mother’s unexplained disappearance many years before. He feels he’s not in charge of his
own life, that forces beyond his control will always determine his destiny. But when a summer affair ignites between Jakub and Jeff Brucelli, Jakub tastes both romantic love and self-empowerment.

After returning to school for his third year of college, Jakub suffers another tragic loss; it shakes his faith in his ability to navigate life’s challenges. Is he doomed to suffer at the hand of fate forever?

When Jeff is diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a potentially fatal cancer of the lymphatic system, Jeff’s oncologist says he must endure debilitating chemotherapy cycles, then radiation
treatments. Jakub is devastated when he learns of this, but decides, for once, he will take control of his future instead of behaving like a helpless bystander.


Review 
My Rating - 3.5 Stars!

Jeff, Karma and Me is an interesting book by Jere M Fishback. It's so much more than I expected.

It took me a while to fully care about Jakub, as his behavior at the beginning annoyed me. Yes, he was acting like a typical college kid, but I just didn't like it. I also didn't feel the strong connection between Jakub and Jeff much. But, later, when the angst fully starts, the story really takes off. 

This is a story about childhood issues that shapes a man and how one's behavior can have tragic results It has illness scares, depression, and more. It also includes a good look into the homophobia trends in different parts of the city. But, damn, by 50% in, I was thrilled I continued reading this. It's seriously an emotional and crazy ride at points. 

The health scare part is what truly captivated me. I was super impressed with Jakub at this point and really connected with them as a couple. 

Wow, and in the end, Jeff, Karma, and Me is an impressive read about forgiveness, and being true to yourself. I am thrilled to have read this Jere Fishback book, but I'm not sure who exactly I would recommend it to. 

Excerpt

Jeff, Karma, and Me
Jere’ M. Fishback © 2020
All Rights Reserved

I was twenty years old when Jeff Brucelli walked into my life and turned it upside down. I had just finished my sophomore year of college and was home for summer break, to live with my dad in
the head ranger’s residence in Fort De Soto Park, a county facility fronting Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Dad oversaw the park’s campground, as well as the picnic areas, boat ramps, piers, and beaches. Our house was a two-bedroom, wood frame structure seated on nine-foot pilings, with a screened porch overlooking a placid bayou. The floors were polished oak, and the wood burning
fireplace was built of local limestone. A wooden dock and covered boat slip extended into the bayou, where Dad kept a sixteen-foot Carolina Skiff with a forty-horsepower outboard.

My first morning home, I gobbled a bowlful of cornflakes and chugged OJ from a carton. Then I took a bike ride through the RV section of the campground. The sun had risen two hours before and already the day heated up. Dampness gathered in my armpits while I pedaled along the crushed shell road. Most campsites I passed were waterfront, shadedby live oaks and sabal palms. Native foliage grew between them: sea grape, hibiscus, turkey oaks, and flame of the woods.

Many sites were empty, but at one near the eastern tip of the campground, an RV the size of a city bus hulked. A guy my age sat there at a picnic table, strumming an acoustic guitar. Shirtless and wearing cutoff denim shorts, he was slender and fair-skinned, and his cola-colored eyes narrowed when I approached on my bike.

“Are you staying here?” I asked.

Sunlight reflected in his mop of dark and wavy hair when he nodded and answered in a scratchy tenor. “My folks are serving as campground hosts the next few months. They’re both schoolteachers
and have the summer free, so we’ll be here through August.”

I dismounted and lowered my kickstand. Then I pointed my chin at the RV. “That’s a nice ride.”

“It belongs to my mom’s parents. Grandma’s not well these days, and they don’t use it much, so they lent it to us for this trip. We’re from Indiana.”

I extended a hand. “I’m Jakub Mazur.”

Jeff told me his name while we shook. His palm felt warm, his grip firm.

I explained how I was home for the summer from Florida State University and living inside the park.

“I just finished my second year at IU,” Jeff said. “I’m a journalism major.”

Jeff glanced here and there before he spoke again, this time in almost a whisper. “We’ve only been here a few days, but I get the impression most people in the campground are older—retirees and
the like.”

I rolled my eyes. “You won’t find many college kids here, but we can hang out if you’d like. Got a bicycle?”

Jeff jerked a thumb toward a ten-speed Schwinn chained to a sabal palm.

“Let’s take a cruise,” I said, “and I’ll show you my house.”

Minutes later we rolled westward, side by side, while our tires ground against the road. We passed beneath limbs of ancient live oaks draped in Spanish moss. Up ahead, at an empty campsite, a
great grey heron stood on a seawall, studying a canal in hopes of finding breakfast.

“How long have you lived in the park?” Jeff asked.

“Since I was eight, when my dad was promoted to head ranger. The residence comes with the position.”

“Must be nice.”

I rocked my head from side to side. “The park’s pretty, and fishing here is good, but I never had other kids to do things with. It could get lonely, especially during summer when I wasn’t in school. The days dragged by, if you know what I mean.”

Jeff grimaced. “I spent a summer on my uncle’s dairy farm, when I was thirteen. The nearest kid my age was three miles away, and I thought I’d go crazy from boredom.”

When we reached the house, I pulled two Cokes from the fridge, and we sat on a glider sofa on the screened porch. Above us, a ceiling fan clacked and stirred the air. Out on the bayou’s placid
surface, a half dozen brown pelicans floated while an osprey chattered in a nearby long leaf pine.

“This is sweet,” Jeff said while his gaze traveled here and there. “We don’t have such places back home. Indiana’s nothing but prairie.”

Jeff talked about his hometown of Peru.

“We have about ten thousand people. There’s a courthouse and high school, and it’s only a three-hour drive from Bloomington, so I can come home on weekends if I choose to, but I don’t often. There’s not much going on in Peru.”

I asked Jeff about his family.

“My dad’s a middle school shop instructor, and Mom teaches freshman English at Peru High. They come from large families, so I have aunts and uncles all over Miami County, loads of cousins as
well.”

I shook my head.

“What is it?” Jeff asked.

“My parents were both only children, so I have no extended family or siblings. It’s just me and my dad.”

“Where’s your mom?”

I kept my gaze fixed on the bayou while my stomach knotted like it always did when I had to explain. “She has…mental health issues. About eleven years ago, she disappeared—just packed up her
belongings and left. We haven’t heard from her since.”

“Damn, that had to be rough.”

“My dad nearly lost his mind. Even today, I don’t think he’s fully recovered from the situation.”

We rocked on the glider for a bit without saying anything more until Jeff rose.

“I need to help my folks with servicing restrooms, but after lunch why don’t we do something together, maybe go to the beach and take a swim?”

“Sounds good,” I said while following Jeff out of the front door.

After he climbed aboard his Schwinn, he raked a hand through his hair, and I noticed his slightly oversized nose had a few freckles on it. Then, while he pedaled away, I wondered if I’d found
someone I could share my summer with.

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble | Kobo


Meet the Author

Jere’ M. Fishback is a former journalist and trial attorney. He lives on a barrier island on Florida’s Gulf coast, where he enjoys watching sunsets with a glass of wine in his hand and a grin on his face.

Website | Facebook

Giveaway




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Tricks by Rick R. Reed






Blurb

Tricks can mean many things: sex partners, deceptions, even magic ... or maybe all three.

Arliss is a gorgeous young dancer at Tricks, the hottest club in Chicago’s Boystown. Sean is the classic nerd, out of place in Tricks, but nursing his wounds from a recent breakup. When the two spy each other, magic blooms.

But this opposites-attract tale does not run smooth. What happens when Arliss is approached by one of the biggest porn producers in the business? Can he make his dreams of stardom come true without throwing away the only real love he’s ever known? And ... will it even matter if the mysterious producers realize their dark intentions?



Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!

It took me a while to become fully invested in Rick Reed's Tricks, but once I did, I couldn't put it down. 

Arliss, a dancer at a sleezy club meets Sean. What follows is a riveting ride, as the two mesh well, but are facing a whole lot of conflict. And damn, that conflict is intense. 

This story includes many references to drug use, prostitutes, orgies, porn, gang bangs, rape, and more. If that isn't your thing, skip this one. What I truly enjoy is the intense fear and awareness of contracting HIV in this story that explores many aspects of the world of "tricks." 

The author does a great job developing this tale with fabulous writing, a complex storyline, and two intriguing characters. The pace is quick, and the action non-stop. 

Tricks is a great read. Definitely check out this Rick Reed book when you're in the mood for a complex story revolving around the world of drugs, sex, clubs, and porn.  


PRE ORDER BLITZ - Nice Guys Don't Win (The Boys #2) by Micalea Smeltzer

Title: Nice Guys Don't Win Series: The Boys #2 Author: Micalea Smeltzer Genre: New Adult College Romance Release Date: May 19, 20...