Thursday, May 23, 2019

One Wild Weekend by SJ York







Blurb

Some say I’m living a lie, but I’m finally living my truth.

When I came out, I wasn’t prepared for the blow back from people who are supposed to be supporters in the genre. I hadn’t expected a parade, but I also hadn’t expected a mob to attack. Everything is conspiring against me, trying to get me to skip the conference. When my books and banner get tossed by the guy I’m living with, I’m sure it’s a sign.

I pluck up some courage and show up at the conference anyway. I’m amazed by the kindness I find, but that doesn’t save me from the drama llamas. Disaster happens, but will the problem turn out to be the best thing in my life?


Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!


There is just something soothing with SJ York's writing. One Wild Weekend is his fun and delightful tale of his banner that once went missing. Of course, I'm guessing this is just fantasy. 😜

Parts of this story really had me laughing, as I have some personal interest in Ted. Let's just say that Ted is HOT! As for those who also know about Ted, read this! I think we all wanted to be with Ted! If you don't know about Ted, I'm honestly not sure how you'll feel about this one. It's a far-fetched tale that might not make any sense. 

There's also a lot of honesty in this story, as readers often do have very strong opinions. The way this is addressed is actually quite well and is very poignant. The author's writing style is fantastic, the flow is seamless, and the story line entertaining. It's definitely an amusing little fantasy romance. 

One Wild Weekend is definitely not SJ York's typical style. Previous works, under the name of Sara York, aren't usually a fantasy. One needs to suspend realistic views, sit back, and just enjoy.







Saint (Salvation Kings MC, #1) by Ana Night




Blurb

Nash Holland is a paramedic who lives for helping people. He’s never once been on the wrong side of the law. When he gets a call to a motorcycle club, he’s apprehensive, but then he meets a biker that makes his knees go weak. He never expected to find love in an outlaw biker, but he can’t deny the way Zayne makes him feel. Dating a biker with Nash’s profession isn’t a great idea but he’s been playing it safe all his life and maybe Zayne is just the right kind of danger for him.

Zayne ‘Saint’ Lewis isn’t your average biker; he’s the road captain of the Salvation Kings MC and he’s not afraid to do what’s necessary to protect his club. He’s a one-percenter but he’s dedicated his life to helping people in need. He’s hesitant to bring Nash into his club life, unsure if Nash will be able to handle it. One thing he’s sure of, though, is the way Nash makes him feel.

Will the secrets and dangers of Zayne’s life jeopardize their relationship? With a war brewing between his and a rival club, can Zayne keep Nash safe?


Review 
My Rating - 5 Stars!

I didn't know what to expect upon starting Saint, the first book in Ana Night's Salvation Kings series. What I found was an amazing book that immediately sucked me in and was a pure delight.

Emotional and inspirational, there are many moments that tugged at my heartstrings. This is a wonderful reminder that not all stereotypes hold up to be true. The Salvation Kings are around to actually help people. Yes, they may have to do some bad things, but it's always for the better good. 

An interesting conflict arises when Saint falls for Nash, a paramedic. Not only does Saint struggle with bringing Nash around the club, but Nash struggles with Saint being a part of the club. As a paramedic, his role is to help people, never to hurt them. 

Saint's an absolutely riveting book. This is my first time reading an Ana Night book, and I am thrilled. I can't wait to read the next book.  


MF - Little Ms Who? by S. Neff







Blurb

Lee has been going through the same routine in his life. Seeing his friends find love has made him question his own choices, and when he meets Tris at the Friday night bonfire he is captivated at first sight. One kiss is all it takes for him to want her for his own, and after that night he thinks he's found his Cinderella and his chance at love. What Lee doesn't know is that some princesses have much bigger secrets than being covered in soot, and Tris’s secrets are going to redefine Lee and everything he thought he knew about himself. Love is never easy and Lee has to decide if he can love Tris even if he’s not who he says he is.


Review 
My Rating - 5 Stars!


S Neff's Little Ms Who? is a terrific romance. I am surprised and thrilled with how much I love this book.

At it's heart, it's an excellent exploration of many different aspects of being transgender. There's a whole lot of the mentality behind gender dysphoria, the difficulty of acceptance, and the struggles to bare yourself to someone. 

This story immediately sucked me in, as it's compelling as well as riveting. Full of extreme examples of transphobia and a girl who won't take no, this is one hell of an emotional ride. It's non-stop concern for Lee and Tris, as they deal with mental issues, as well as dangerous situations. 

The transformation of Lee and Tris from the beginning, where their world is full of secrets, to the end, where they let love rule, is huge. Both inspirational and thought-provoking, I love this couple.

Little Ms Who? is a delightful thriller/romance. It's a beautiful story of falling in love for a person, not a body. I highly recommend this S Neff book.


BLOG TOUR - Saint Unshamed (A Gay Mormon's Life) by Kerry Ashton



BLOG TOUR


Book Title: SAINT UNSHAMED: A Gay Mormon’s Life 

Healing from the Shame of Religion, Rape, Conversion Therapy & Cancer

Author: Kerry Ashton 

Publisher: Lynn Wolf Enterprises

Cover Artist: Kerry Ashton 

Release Date: April 17, 2019

Genres: A Gay Memoir featuring M/M Romance & some hard core sex

Tropes: Forbidden love, Rape, Mormon Religion

Themes: Coming out, Forgiveness, Overcoming Religion, Rape, Police Surveillance & Arrest, Conversion Therapy including Electric Shock Treatments, and a 16-year battle with rare cancer

Heat Rating: 5 flames

There are many erotic passages—most are hardcore, erotic and explicit passages, all M/M. Many deal with scenes of sexual humiliation, degradation, group scenes, S&M and/or the gay male leather scene.

Length: 120 000 words /348 pages incl. 14 pages of B&W photos from author’s private collection.




“A TRIUMPHANT MEMOIR!” Clarion Books


Blurb

The first paragraph of Kerry Ashton's new memoir explains a lot: “I told this story once as fiction in the 1980s, but this time I tell the truth. I even tell the truth, in #MeToo fashion, about being violently raped by another man when I was 18, with a knife held to my throat—a secret I kept from everyone, including myself, for over 40 years. The rape, like other experiences I endured while a student at Brigham Young University, where I came out in the early 1970s, had a profound impact on my later life. But this story is not so much about my rape or my coming of age at BYU, as it is about the lifelong effects of shame itself, not only about how I internalized and inherited a wounding shame from my Mormon upbringing, but also how I eventually unshamed myself. It is about the journey of a lifetime, finding spiritual growth, self-discovery and healing along the way, while encountering many miraculous events that pushed me forward through darkness toward the light.”

Telling about his experiences during his four years at BYU—the rape, falling in love for the first time, police surveillance, harassment and arrest, while enduring three years of conversion therapy and electric shock treatments—provide the structure of Kerry’s memoir. But intermittently, the author shares memories from his childhood, growing up Mormon in Pocatello, Idaho, and later from his adulthood, as well as from his professional career as an actor and writer, both in L.A. and NYC, describing encounters with Barbra Streisand, Elizabeth Taylor, Bette Davis and Julie Harris, while detailing his experiences with Tennessee Williams and his brief affair with Stephen Sondheim. Lastly, he talks about the 12 years he spent in therapy, about his 16-year battle with cancer, how he eventually rid himself of the shame internalized from his Mormon youth, sharing glimpses into his sexual journey from his innocent youth through S&M and the gay leather scene in mid-life to the loving monogamous relationship he now enjoys.


Review 


My Rating - 5 Stars!



I have to admit I was weary of reading Saint Unshamed just because it is a memoir. But, wow. Just wow. I am elated to have discovered this amazing and heartfelt story by Kerry Ashton.

The author holds nothing back in retelling his life. His account his raw, real, and gritty, and will have the reader feeling all the emotions along with the author.

I found myself saddened and angry that anyone has to be brought up in a church where homosexuality is viewed as an extreme sin. If you want to understand the harm the Mormon church has done to it's homosexual children, read this. I am hurting for all those former Mormons who are now openly gay, as well as any lgbt child currently being raised as Mormon. 

Kerry's life story consists of vivid retelling of rape, learning about sex, and conversion therapy. The rape scene is graphic, rough and downright horrific to read, and even worse are the lifelong consequences of this assault. A victim of conversion therapy, those scenes are gut-wrenching and will have the reader devastated on Kerry's behalf.

An absolute must read for anyone looking to understand more about the Mormon church's feelings on homosexuality. A retelling of growth, healing, and acceptance, it's honest, painful, and haunting.

This book centers around the realistic opinion that organized religion is something where views and thoughts are forced upon people, instead of allowing one to make their own opinions. To know this story is true, not just to Kerry, but to many gay Mormon men, is devastating. Absolutely horrid and vile. My heart hurts for all of these men. 



Kerry's writing is fantastic and heartfelt, with a non-stop pace and a vivid recounting of his upbringing. My only complaint is that the author jumps around with the time line throughout. Other than that, the writing is perfect, as it's written with depth and precision.

Sometimes you just find a story that you feel for weeks afterwards. Saint Unshamed is one of those stories. Kerry Ashton's life story if full of homophobia, shame, and family issues, along with fear and despair. It is an excellent memoir that I'd recommend to anyone. 





Buy Links





   




Excerpt


READ PART ONE HERE

The Holy War, as I have come to think of it, began on a hot day in early September 1971, the day I left Pocatello to drive four hours south to Provo, Utah, to attend Brigham Young University. As in all wars, whether holy or unholy, it would not be without its casualties.

I spent the morning packing things in my ‘56 Chevrolet, parked in the spot on the lawn where our driveway would have been had my parents ever had the money to pave it. A yellow-and-bronze, two- door coupe with cream interior, a huge cream steering wheel, and black dashboard, the car had class, which is why I named it Oscar— after the Academy Awards I hoped to win one day.

As I packed Oscar full of boxes, Dad worked under the hood of the car. Once Oscar was filled with boxes, I sank down on our front lawn. Knowing this would be my last day at home, I tried to capture everything I saw and felt around me: The red of Mom's roses framing our side porch, the hazy blue of the late morning sky, the large pine tree at the front of our corner lot, and the blue-grey crag of Scout Mountain in the distance, where I had always imagined Santa’s sleigh flew over on Christmas Eve.

Hearing Mom humming in the kitchen as she prepared lunch, everything seemed right in my Latter-Day-Saint world.

Getting up from the grass, I walked over to where Dad was still working under Oscar’s hood. “Everything look okay, Dad?” I asked.

“Oh, sure,” Dad replied in his folksy way. “I just wanted to make sure everything’s good with your car. I don’t want you stranded on the highway.”

Though I had fulfilled every church obligation, I was not the mechanic that Dad had hoped each of his three sons would become. I left mechanical jobs to Dad or to my two older brothers, both married by then.

“I love you, Dad,” I said suddenly. He stopped tinkering with the spark plugs and looked up at me. “I love you, too, son,” he replied, embracing me with a greasy hug.

Mom came out on the side porch just then. Wiping her hands on her apron, she called out to us, “Okay, you two! Lunch is ready!”

I washed my hands at the kitchen sink and let Dad wash his hands in the bathroom. Then I joined Mom at the kitchen table while we waited for Dad.

“Kerry Lynn,” she whispered, stroking my dark brown hair as she often did, “I don't know what I'm going to do without you.”

Now a grown-up, or so I thought, I bristled at her calling me by both my given names as it sounded so girlish. But since it was my last day at home, I chose to ignore it.

“With all the kids married,” Mom continued, “and you going off to college, this house is going to feel awfully empty without you.”

“Maybe you and Dad will finally get some peace and quiet,” I kidded. “Maybe now you two can finally go on that second honeymoon you’ve talked about.”

“Maybe,” she said, laughing as she reached out to hold me. “I

love you, Kerry.” As she held me tight, I never wanted to let go. Once Dad joined us at the table, he said a blessing on the food, as we always did in our home.

After the blessing, we tore through the food. Mom had made some of my favorites: Her wonderful potato and egg salad, savory burgers with all the trimmings, and delicious corn-on-the-cob bought fresh from the farmer’s market.

After lunch, we went into the living room where Dad anointed my head with oil, laid his hands upon my head, and gave me a sacred Father's Blessing—the blessing of a Melchizedek Priesthood Elder— warning me to be “mindful of the Adversary.”

Before I left that day, Dad took a photograph of me standing in front of Oscar. Barely 18 and dressed neatly, at 6’3” and 190 pounds, I was the very image of a conservative, clean-cut, LDS young man who loved his Mormon family, the LDS Church, and his Heavenly Father.

I arrived at Salt Lake City three hours later. From there, it took me another hour driving south on Interstate 15 before I arrived in the city of Provo.

Taking my first glimpse that day of Provo through Oscar’s wide windshield, I could see the white LDS Temple huddled against the Wasatch Mountains, its golden steeple gleaming in the late afternoon sun. Further north, Mount Timpanogos reached heavenward, while a sign at the main entrance to the BYU campus read: “The World Is Our Campus.” In reality, the campus became my world.

Driving north past the immense Cougar Stadium, and then into the foothills just beyond the BYU campus, then turning east and heading toward the mountains, I came to the huge Marriott Sports Arena under construction on my right, and stopped at the light. Once the light turned green, I made a left turn onto Sumac Avenue, climbing dramatically into the foothills, before pulling into the driveway in front of my new off-campus apartment.



About the Author

Raised in Pocatello, Idaho as a Mormon in the heart of Mormon Zion, Kerry attended BYU in the early 70s, where some of the most dramatic events recounted in his memoir took place.

Always interested in pursuing a career as both an actor and writer, Kerry wrote his first play, BUFFALO HEAD NICKELSat the age of 17, and published it at 18. Since then, he has published several works, among them most prominently THE WILDE SPIRIT, a one-man play with music, in which Ashton starred as Oscar Wilde, and also wrote the play’s book, music and lyrics. The play won Kerry critical acclaim for both his writing and performance, and three 1977 L.A. Civic Star Awards for Best Actor, Play and Direction. The play ran for three consecutive seasons in Provincetown, MA from 1990-1992, and was produced Off-Broadway in 1996, winning Kerry a National Award of Merit from ASCAP. The author now makes his home with his partner Victor Ramirez in South Florida. For more info, visit www.KerryAshton.com.



Author Links















Giveaway 

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one of two eBooks of SAINT UNSHAMED




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Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Going For Two: MMM Best Friend Football Romance by Van Cole




Blurb

Sometimes One Isn't Enough
The playboy life is the life for me and nothing is going to change that. Nothing.
That is until I got this wild idea that changed my entire life.
Now, most people wouldn’t go gunning for their best friend –
Or, their best friend’s ex.
I went for both.
That’s right.
Both.
Because, why settle for one when you can have two?
Truth be told, this probably isn’t my best nor brightest idea.
And I’m prepared for everything to crash and burn.
Or, at least, I thought I was.
But things are getting heated and I’m getting attached.
I don’t want to lose these guys but things don’t always work out the way you want them to.
And I have a bad habit of coming up short.
Let’s just hope my love life is nothing like my career because one more failed Superbowl and I’m just another failure for the history books. 


Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!

Going For Two is a friends to lovers menage romance by Van Cole.

Axel never thought of his best friend Riley in a sexual way, until now. Running into Riley's ex, Cain, Axel gets a crazy idea involving all three of them. It's enjoyable that these three men have a history before getting together. 

This tale of apologies and forgiveness is a quick, short story that's quite easy going. It's hot at times, of course, but it definitely lacks depth. 

Going For Two is an enjoyable light read when you're looking for something short and spicy. 



RELEASE BLITZ - Torn by Rick R Reed




Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 63,424 words

Cover Design: Reese Dante

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press



Blurb

Ever been torn between two lovers? That's Ricky Comparetto's problem.

It's 1995, and Ricky is making his very first trip across the pond with his best friend. Ricky, hungry for love and looking for it in all the wrong places, finds it in the beach city of Brighton. His new love has the curious name of Walt Whitman and is also an American, which only serves to make him sexier and more intriguing. By the time Walt and Ricky part, promises are made for a reunion in Boston.

But the course of true love never runs smooth. In Chicago Ricky almost immediately falls in love again. Tom Green is a sexy blue-collar beast with the kindest heart Ricky has ever run across.

What's he to do? With a visit to the East Coast on the horizon and a new love blossoming in Ricky's home of Chicago, Ricky truly is torn.


Excerpt


In which our hero, Ricky Comparetto, finds himself lost on his very first time in London in the wee hours of the morning. It serves him right, after his shameless behavior at an after-hours sex club.

Much later, I found myself wandering the streets of London near New Scotland Yard, searching through its labyrinthine corridors for Trevor’s building. In the quiet darkness of London’s wee small hours, it seemed the world had paused to take a breath. Again, a feeling of things being surreal overcame me; I wondered if I’d ever find my way back to Boutros again, or if I’d be doomed to wander endlessly through this curving warren of streets.

It was maybe three o’clock in the morning, and Westminster felt almost like a movie set, perhaps something dystopian, where the main character wakes to find the world empty. The light of Big Ben shone in the distance, but I had no idea how to get back to Trevor’s.

I was too exhausted to panic, however, even though I felt like a rat in a maze, a charming, historic maze, but a maze nonetheless. Looking back, I recall that I felt serene, strange as that is to remember.

I had just decided to see if I could find a park bench or curb to lie down on—to await morning’s light and new clarity to get back to my friends—when I discovered that there was such a thing as a bobby, the Brits’ word for a patrolman on foot. This bobby, who was dressed all in black with a tall hat adorned with a shield, and I appeared to be the only ones about, other than the black cabs that passed by stealthily, similar to the one that had deposited me in a place I’d believed was close to Trevor’s.

I approached the bobby and told him, a little abashed, that I was lost. I supplied him with the name of the street I sought and, for good measure, what Trevor’s building looked like.

He nodded, all business. “You need to cross the Thames”—he pointed that way—“and then make your way back in the opposite direction from where you were going. You’re not far.”

I thanked him, but his directions simply didn’t feel right. I didn’t want to argue with him, and I certainly didn’t want to believe he was fucking with me, so I didn’t question him. I may have been lost, but I wasn’t that lost. I let him continue on his rounds. I stood still, not wanting him to see me continue on what he’d most likely perceive as my misguided path. Why’d you bother asking him if you weren’t going to listen? I wondered but had no good answer for myself.

I plopped down on a bench to ponder what I should do. I supposed that, with morning’s light, Boutros would be worried (or worse, would believe I’d shacked up with yet another man) and come looking.

I questioned my decision to part from Boutros and Trevor earlier in the evening, when the gay club we were drinking at closed its doors way too early for me. I mean, really, eleven o’clock? And this was “swingin’” London? Trevor suggested I go to an “after-hours” club called the Brick. He told me it was a no-holds-barred kind of place. Or was it “no-holes-barred”? Whatever. The idea of the “Felliniesque” club, as Trevor described it, appealed to me.

So I went, met a few nice boys, and ended the evening by being showered with come in a cloakroom, courtesy of one half of a couple I’d met who were visiting London from Liverpool.

I thought it would be easy to get home because Trevor’s building was within walking distance of New Scotland Yard, which is where I told my cabbie to drop me.

I hadn’t counted on streets that curved, and ended and began with no rhyme or reason. I hadn’t counted on the buildings and streets all looking so alike.

I should have.

After a while, I got up from the bench and started wandering again. And then I stopped… and sighed with relief. Just ahead was one of those iconic red phone booths you might imagine when you think of London—or Doctor Who.

“Oh thank God,” I whispered, making my way to the booth. I groped in my pocket, hoping the receipt upon which Trevor had written his phone number earlier was still there. What if it isn’t? I thought, the panic already causing my pulse rate to quicken despite my fatigue, the copious amounts of alcohol I’d imbibed, and the two orgasms I’d had at the Brick.

But my hand curled around the little slip of paper, and I brought it out and squinted at the scrawled number in the wan light. I lifted the phone off the hook, deposited a mystifying array of coins that I hoped would be enough, and dialed.

Trevor answered, voice heavy with sleep.

I told him my problem and described where I was, along with the cross streets nearby.

He didn’t seem fazed, for which I was grateful. “Hang on, sweetie. I’ll be right there.” He disconnected before I could say anything else.

I left the phone booth and sat down on a curb. I regarded the crescent moon above for only the shortest of times. Trevor appeared before me, like an angel, within a matter of fewer than five minutes.

I didn’t have much to say, other than to express my gratitude… and embarrassment.

His building turned out to be around the next corner.





Real Men. True Love.


Rick R. Reed draws inspiration from the lives of gay men to craft stories that quicken the heartbeat, engage emotions, and keep the pages turning. Although he dabbles in horror, dark suspense, and comedy, his attention always returns to the power of love. He’s the award-winning and bestselling author of more than fifty works of published fiction and is forever at work on yet another book. Lambda Literary has called him: “A writer that doesn’t disappoint…” You can find him at www.rickrreed.com or www.rickrreedreality.blogspot.com. Rick lives in Palm Springs, CA with his beloved husband and their fierce Chihuahua/Shiba Inu mix.







Email: rickrreedbooks@gmail.com





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One Wild Weekend by SJ York

Amazon Link Goodreads Link Blurb Some say I’m living a lie, but I’m finally living my truth. When I came out, I wasn...