Saturday, May 27, 2017

Promotional Post: Winter Burning by Rain Carrington #Review #Giveaway




Author: Rain Carrington
Book: Winter Burning
Publisher: AAS Publishing
Cover Artist: AJ Corza
Publication date: May 18, 2017
Length: 583 pages


Reviewed by Meredith


Synopsis

James Snow Bringer is an impressionable young Native American man living on the Montana sheep farm his family has owned for decades. His life on the reservation bores him to death and James yearns to see more of the world. During a trip into town, he meets a bus load of hippies, headed to a commune. When he goes to stay with them, he gets a taste of a different world which only wets his appetite to learn more.

Wyman Crow has faced hate many times and serving his country in Vietnam, and losing his lover there, only makes things worse. He returns home with the deep-seated knowledge that he will always be hated for his skin color wherever he is. It takes some time, but Wyman learns to accept himself and vows to become the warrior his ancestors were, the only way he can. He tells their stories. Wyman will not lie down and let bigots win, determined to fight for equality in a world that doesn’t want him.

A chance meeting at a pow-wow brings James and Wyman together where they quickly succumb to mutual attraction. Wyman falls in love with the innocent young man but when James persists in asking questions about who their people are, Wyman decides to do more than tell him. He shows him. When they embark on a journey of discovery together, James is eager to learn. He’s not prepared for what he finds.

Winter Burning – An epic tale of painful truth, hatred, and most important of all, deep and abiding love.







 Review

Winter Burning is very different from any other book this author has produced. That said, it's also amazing and truly shows the versatility of this author.

This is a journey that you, the reader, take with James. His journey is so meaningful and important because of his background. A child who lived a sheltered life because his parents were terrified of the prejudices of the white race.

James' journey opens his eyes to so much. He's such a wonderful character. You connect with him and the compassion he encompasses in everything he does. In his adventures of discovery, he finds love. he also finds the hatred his parents spoke of and sees the suffering of Native Americans.

This story is very emotional. Each moment is felt deeply. Whether it be love, loss, fear or reality.

Wyman and James take a lot of this on together. Wyman, a man who's seen it all from Vietnam to back home. He takes James to the answers he seeks. Though they are opposites in the lives they've lived up to, their start point, by the end they seemed to be right where they should.

There's so much amazement in this book. Yes it's long but it's epic and the situations, discoveries, and personal revelations are truly outstanding. I very much recommend this book.





 Giveaway

Enter the giveaway to win a copy of Winter Burning
This will be gifted directly to your Kindle.

Giveaway ends June 3rd.
Thanks

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Saturday Author Spotlight: Parker Williams & K.C. Wells #Interview #Giveaway



Happy Saturday, everyone! The greatest day of the week is here: Saturday Author Spotlight! This week I'm shining two spotlights. I have the amazing writing duo Parker Williams and K.C. Wells here with us. They have a new book out, Before You Break, and we have a review for that today. There's an interview, and then there's a giveaway for a signed paperback copy of this book! So, let us get started.



Before You Break

Title: Before You Break
Series: Secrets #1
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Publication Date: May 26, 2017
Length: 340 pages

Reviewed by Morningstar

Synopsis

Six years ago Ellis walked into his first briefing as the newest member of London’s Specialist Firearms unit. He was partnered with Wayne and they became fast friends. When Wayne begins to notice changes—Ellis’s erratic temper, the effects of sleep deprivation—he knows he has to act before Ellis reaches his breaking point. He invites Ellis to the opening of the new BDSM club, Secrets, where Wayne has a membership. His purpose? He wants Ellis to glimpse the lifestyle before Wayne approaches him with a proposition. He wants to take Ellis in hand, to control his life because he wants his friend back, and he figures this is the only way to do it.

There are a few issues, however. Ellis is straight. Stubborn. And sexy. Wayne knows he has to put his own feelings aside to be what Ellis needs. What surprises the hell out of him is finding out what Ellis actually requires.


Buy Links




Review

This book is a spin-off from the Collars & Cuffs series that has Jarod and Eli making a move to London and opening up their own BDSM called Secrets. We get a small glimpse at some familiar faces from that series, but this book does not require reading that series.

I struggled to contact with Wayne and Ellis the first portion of this book. I can’t even tell you what it was that was making me feel that way. It could’ve been the chemistry between the two guys or the uncertainty of how these authors were going to bring them together, but whatever it was it was throwing me off.

I loved Wayne with his sense of humor and how he was a leader in all ways that his team needed him. The dynamic that the team had especially in the police force and having an out and proud
gay man leading the team was incredible. Wayne wanted to use the guiding hand that he’d always used with Ellis on the job, in private but Ellis struggles with it. And man, does he have the patience of a saint when it comes to Ellis and the phone calls and the leaving. But you can tell he really wants to take care of Ellis and loves him.

A lot of his struggles come from his family situation, a situation that I truly understand and on some level can easily see parents brainwashing their child into believing in what they taught him, which they did from a very young age. Ellis is in a tight spot when it comes to his job, and his family adds on top of it the BDSM Wayne is throwing at him I was glad he didn’t come around quickly. But it makes complete sense that submitting to another man in his situation would been even harder to fall into.

The banter between the two men later on in the book when things are going well between them is fun and made me smile. The development with Ellis’s sister was sad but uplifting all the same.
Although it is long, it’s well paced and flows. There's alternating POV even within a chapter, but it is clearly marked and easy to get used to the change, so no head hopping, not that surprises me with these two authors. Great story that’s light on the BDSM, heavy on the sexy, and light on the angst.

Other collaborations with Parker Williams and KC Wells




Interview

Well, it’s very exciting to have a dynamic duo like the two of you as our Author(s) Saturday Spotlight. We’ve never had a double up so this is exciting. You have a new release Before You Break. Our lovely Morningstar reviewed it below and for a while now it seems to be one of those books people have been so excited about. Congrats on the new book. Today I’m going to ask you both some questions. Some together some separate. Hopefully painless.





For both of you: How did you meet?

Parker: I met her at the candy store, she turned around and smiled at me, you get the picture?

K.C.: He was reading ‘An Unlocked Heart’ and messaged me to tell me how much he enjoyed it. I asked him if he was interested in hearing about the second book, ‘Trusting Thomas’. His answer hasn’t changed much since I’ve known him: “Duh.”


For you both: When did you both decide you wanted to write books together?

K.C.: I asked him if he’d consider writing a book with me. He said no.

Parker: In my defense, she’s freaking K.C. Wells! I was a nobody. Then one night at work, I had an idea for a story about a boy from the US who went to the UK because someone he’d never met sent him a ticket. I talked to her about it and from that came ‘Someone to Keep Me’.


K.C.: Er, excuse me? When I asked you, I had ONE book published. Okay, so I’d written four, but still… (It’s a good thing I love him, right? ;-) )


Parker: What was your first impression of KC?

She was funny, smart, sweet, cute, cuddly, and adorable.
Hey, wait a minute… K.C. why are YOU answering for me? (Just kidding. She is all those things and more.)


KC: How did you know that you were going to be able to collaborate with Parker so well?

By the time we started writing, we were already having these verbal sparring bouts on Facebook. People came by to watch with popcorn. I’d read his first book, Pitch, and I loved his style. But when the moment arrived to start, we were already friends who talked every day on Skype. I just… knew.



Parker: What is the hardest part about collaborating?

Waking up at 2 in the morning to talk with her while she sips coffee. Beyond that, working with KC is great. I’ve learned a lot from her. Including to look for SQUIRRELS! (Which is my way of saying both of us can be pretty easily distracted.)

K.C. : snort    Ya think?


KC: What’s your favorite thing about writing with someone else?

Bouncing ideas off one another. I love it when I get a message when we’re in the middle of writing, that begins with OOH. It usually means he’s had another great idea.


For you both: How did you form the idea for Before You Break?


Parker: When we were writing the last two books of Collars & Cuffs, I suggested that if we did a new series, Eli & Jarod should move to London to open a BDSM club. KC liked the idea, so we began to discuss possible storylines. One of them was Wayne and Ellis, two police officers. We ran several potential plots through the betas and asked them for their opinion.


For You Both: Can you tell us what you’re currently working on together or separate?

Parker: We’re on the last two chapters of ‘An Unlocked Mind’. If the title sounds similar to K.C.’s first book in the Collars & Cuffs series, ‘An Unlocked Heart’, it’s because it features Alex’s brother, the selfish prick known as Rob. I’ve also got ‘Haven’s War’ coming in June (it’s the sequel to Haven’s Creed and deals with Haven coming up against an enemy that has killed other agents and seems to be looking for him.) And in July I have Runner coming out from Dreamspinner (my first solo book with them as Parker).

K.C.: I’ve just finished writing Lace, a standalone short story. Next it’s BFF, my last Dreamspun Desires title. And after that? Well, let’s just say it will be a departure from my usual writing style ;-)



Could either of you ever collaborate with anyone else or is this unique?

Parker: I’m not sure. To be honest, I’m not super-confident in my writing. I’m getting better, but not sure how well I could work with someone else. K.C. is patient with me, which I totally appreciate. Plus she’s easily distracted by SQUIRRELS!

K.C.: I’ve been asked by a couple of authors, both of whom have writing styles that would gel well with mine. The only thing would be finding the time, because there seriously aren’t enough hours in the day!


How can each of your readers follow your work: Websites, Twitter, Facebook etc…

K.C.: Twitter, Website, Facebook, 



FAST FIRE QUESTIONS:

For Parker

Day or night? Probably very late night/very early morning.
Beer or wine? Neither. I’m not a drinker.
Favorite holiday? Halloween because our local food store carries vegan pumpkin bars!
Best song ever? Right now it’s The Warrior Song: Hard Corps by Sean Householder
Favorite comfort food? Paul makes an awesome pot pie that I need on bad days.
Favorite KC book she wrote without you? An Unlocked Heart or, because I’m a goof, the Personal Series which features a character named Will Parkinson (my alter-ego)
Favorite destination? Bed!
Favorite color? Yellow or red, depending on my mood


For KC:

Chocolate or vanilla? *eye roll* Really? (chocolate)
Dogs or cats? Kitties.
Favorite movie? Sorry. WAYYYY too many to answer that one
Favorite Parker Williams book he wrote without you? 500 Miles
Favorite flower? freesia
Favorite alcoholic beverage? Wine, Long Islands and Mai Tais all tie *grins*
Cake or ice cream? Ice cream!
Favorite place to write? A café here on the island, by the sea


Okay, thank you both so very much for being here! I’m so thrilled for your new release and for all the books to come.




Giveaway

Parker Williams and KC Wells will gift one person a signed copy of 
Before You Break.

Since they live in separate parts of the world here's how it will work.
If the Random winner is in the US it will be signed by Parker.
If it's international it will be signed by KC Wells.

I want to thank both of them for being here today!
Contest will end on June 2nd!
Thanks!



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Friday, May 26, 2017

Promotional Post: Hellagor's Flame by Phoenix Hell #Review #Giveaway



Author: Phoenix Hell
Book: Hellagor's Flame
Series: Supernatural Porn Stars #1
Self Published
Length: 53,432 word count
Publication Date: April 6, 2017


Reviewed by Meredith


Synopsis

Meet Hellagor, he's a Sprite-Witch hybrid plus he's a Prince like his fathers’. His grandmother is Queen of the Sprites. He had told his friends that he was crushing on a porn star. They split the secret to all forms of social media.

Meet Flame Nature: Porn Star Extraordinaire. He learns about Hellagor's crush. After being kidnapped by a group of rogue soldiers, found by an irritated Hellagor and then healed by a Goddess, the Sprite hybrid accidentally unleashes his powers and those of his friends that came to rescue Flame after unleashing his fury on the rogue soldiers.

Can the porn stars grasp what has happened to them? Will Flame accept Hellagor as a lover? Will they ever end up happily ever after?




Buy Links







Review

Hellagor's Flame is a paranormal story with romance and suspense and lots of lust. The title is quite clever once you've read the book. Hellagor is one of the MC's and he's a witch hybrid and Flame is the other MC and is a porn star that Hellagor has a very serious want on for! Hence, Hellagor's Flame. Just a little something I found to be cute.


This is the first Phoenix book I've read and I always say that's a nerve-wracking experience because you never know what to expect and if the author's style will mesh with the reader. I found the style to flow well, there were some moments where things dragged or were over played but it wasn't unbearable. The author had a wild imagination and though some dialog I found to be a wee bit cheesy the characters themselves were great. 

Their personalities were different and obviously their abilities and what they brought to the story. This made for an interesting and entertaining read. These characters worked in this book and together the chemistry was believable. It's paranormal with some fantasy happening so suspending belief and all that is a must going into to this. You can try to make sense of certain things but you likely won't be able to.

This is good for a fan of magic and paranormal stories. It's entertaining. 





About the Author

Phoenix Hell is a pseudonym for his real name. He's in his early thirties and began his love for writing back when he first read a fiction anthology. He wanted to do M/M romance with a paranormal twist. And most of all the books that are running around in his head are dealing with the paranormal or supernatural.
Phoenix hates mornings and loves to stay up late reading or working on a new book. He's very shy, but if you get him to come out of his shell he will make you laugh till you pee your pants. He's also a Wiccan and a clairvoyant. He usually will post things that are going on about him or complain about his family.
So when you see his book for the first time, he hopes that you enjoy it, shed a few tears and fall in love with his characters.
When he's not writing, he's reading books by his favorite authors, drinking sweet tea and just trying to relax.



Also by Phoenix Hell
Work in the anthology authors off the shelf
The Dark side of Witch
A Demonic Christmas (Book 1 of the Zodiac Pack)

Where to find the author:









Patreon


Giveaway

Enter the giveaway to win a copy of Hellagor's Flame
This will be gifted to your Kindle.
Contest ends June 2nd

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Random Review: Renewing the Soul by Annabella Michaels #Review #Giveaway




Author: Annabella Michaels
Book: Renewing the Soul
Series: Souls of Chicago #4
Self Published
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Length: 219 pages


Reviewed by Meredith


Synopsis

Rocko earned and loved his reputation as the wild child of the rock band, Carter’s Creed. His bandmates dubbed him Animal, not only for his skills on the drums, but because he was always looking for the next thrill. Sex, drugs and rock and roll were what he lived for. That was until one night when his wild ways nearly cost him his life.
As the owner of Golden Entertainment Studios, Lachlan Edwards had a vested interest in his newest clients, the members of the band, Carter’s Creed. He wasn’t surprised when they quickly rose to the top of the music charts, given their talent, but he was concerned with how their drummer, Rocko, seemed to be spiraling out of control. When Rocko seemingly hits rock bottom, Lachlan decides to step in and offer him a chance to recover.
Will Rocko accept Lachlan’s offer even if it means facing the past he’s tried so hard to run away from, or will it all prove to be too much and send him spinning out of control once again?





Review

Renewing the Soul is book four in Annabella Michaels’ Souls of Chicago Series. Though each book could be read as a standalone I would recommend reading these in order. As each book ends the epilogue shows the next book coming so they sort of overlap.

So, if you’ve been reading in order you know that this is Rocko’s story. He’s the drummer of Carter’s Creed. We’ve seen him throughout this series. He’s the drug & alcohol addicted friend who is also considered a whore. At least, up until now, that’s how he’s been perceived. Well, we almost lost him in the last book. And we knew that this one would take place immediately after that book.

Lachlan, who is the music mogul who has the contract with Carter’s Creed, decides he’s going to save Rocko. He’s going to be whatever he needs to get better because he feels Rocko can be saved. Funny thing about books like this is, sometimes when the characters set out to save others they inevitably end up saving themselves too. And that’s what happens here.

Renewing the Soul is a perfect title for this book. Yes, it’s largely Rocko/Riley’s soul that need the fixing but so did Lachlan’s.

We see a lot of the secondary characters but because this is the first one of this series to step away from the Greene family, the secondary characters weren’t so much the Greene’s as they were people in Lachlan’s life that meld with Riley’s aka Rocko.

I really thought this was a beautiful story that was filled with a lot of hope and love. It’s a wonderful addition to this series.



Giveaway

Enter the monthly review giveaway!
It ends on May 31st.
Thanks.

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Audiobook Review: Another Dumb Jock by Jeff Erno Narrated by Ezekiel Robison #Review #Giveaway



Author: Jeff Erno
Narrator: Ezekiel Robison
Book: Another Dumb Jock
Series: Dumb Jock #2
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Publication date: January 9, 2017
Length: 6 hours 3 minutes


Reviewed by Morningstar

Synopsis

Jeff Irwin and Brett Willson raised a fine son, Adam, in their unconventional, judgment-free family. But being the son of two dads has its challenges. Although Adam loves them, he’s determined to prove he’s not gay, like they are. To this end he’s become the star pitcher of his high school baseball team, a true jock.
Then Adam is suspended after he gets into a fight at school, and his dads find out his grades are slipping. Determined to put him back on track, they hire him a tutor: a short, nerdy kid named Trevor. Despite his resistance, soon enough Adam’s worst nightmare comes true when he finds himself attracted to Trevor. This gives him a choice: follow his heart or become just another dumb jock.


 Buy Links




 Review

I fell in love with this series from the very first read of book one, Dumb Jock, watching Jeff Irwin and Brett Wilson come together through tutoring and homophobia in rural Michigan. Jeff and Brett are back but as adults raising their two children. Adam is their teenage son who works so hard to be like his dad Brett and nothing like his father, Jeff.

I felt for Adam in this whole story. His struggle to be nothing like his emotional “motherly” father Jeff was sad, and thankfully he never came across as a complete jerk more like a kid fighting against who he was. In comes nerdy Trevor to tutor Adam through a class he’s failing, and Adam’s struggles grow bigger because he is falling for Trevor, a boy just as emotional as his father, Jeff. I loved Trevor. He was this mix of strong and shy living a family life that makes being the small gay nerdy teenage boy even more challenging.

Jeff and Brett pay a significant role in this story and seeing them again, in particular through the struggle of parenting, was fantastic. I can you tell as a parent they deal, especially Jeff, with Adam and his issues, with extraordinary patience. Jeff Erno is one of my favorite authors who’s writing, and storytelling is one of the best out there.

The narrator gave this story layers and life and made me react with more emotion (i.e., screaming at the counselor while driving down the road) than just reading could have. The voices were spot on for me, and the emotion he put into each line made me feel the character connection even more. I know I’ve found a new narrator that I’ll be looking for more work from and hope that the author continues to use him.





 Giveaway

Enter the monthly review giveaway
Contest ends May 31st!
Thanks!

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Release Blitz: Boys Don't Cry by JK Hogan Excerpt #Giveaway

Title:  Boys Don't Cry
Author: J.K. Hogan
Publisher:  J.K. Hogan
Release Date: May 25th 2017
Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 70,000 words
Genre: Romance

Add to Goodreads

                                           

Synopsis

Mackenzie Pratt is having the worst luck of his life. His apartment building is being torn down, and since he’s jobless and just weeks away from graduating college, he can’t find anywhere else he can afford to live that isn’t a critter-infested dump. As he’s lamenting the very real possibility of job hunting while couch-surfing, he gets an offer from the coworker of his best friend. An in-demand mobile app developer and heir to his parents’ fortune, Laurent Beaudry is literally an eccentric billionaire. Even though Mackenzie realizes he’s basically living the plot of a cheesy romance novel, he takes the proffered room in Laurent’s Baltimore mansion. He finds his new housemate to be grumpy, brooding, and, at times, incredibly kind and endearing. Raised by his brother after their father’s death, Mackenzie spent his formative years plowing headlong through school, focusing on little else beyond earning his teaching certification. He’s never taken the time to explore love and relationships, much less sexuality, so when he finds himself being courted by another man, he has no idea what to do. And when he realizes he might actually return those feelings, his life takes a whole new direction.

Excerpt




The house was dark so I couldn’t see much, but what I could see was immaculate, contrary to what Taylor had said. The hardwood floors gleamed in the moonlight, the furniture looked expensive and perfect, and there wasn’t a dirty dish or dust bunny in sight. “I thought you said it was a sty,” I whispered.
“Oh, this? Not this. He only uses a fraction of the house, the suite with his bedroom, living room, library, and office. All of this is just for show,” he said with a sweeping gesture toward the big empty parlor we were facing. “And why are you whispering? He knows I’m coming.”
“I don’t know. It seems so quiet and…undisturbed.”
Taylor’s chuckle had an evil ring to it. “You want disturbed? Follow me.” He cupped his hands around his mouth and yelled. “Mr. Beaudry! It’s me, Taylor. Morrison. From Mindstream. The place you work.”
He made his way down a dark corridor with me dogging his heels. “He doesn’t remember who you are? Where he works?”
“Oh, he knows. But when he’s been staring at code for hours on end and not sleeping, sometimes basic stuff slips his mind. Details like that can be hard for geniuses like him.”
Genius? I didn’t think I’d ever heard that term used to sincerely describe someone. “What does he do again?”
“He’s a mobile app developer. Highly sought after, but right now he works exclusively for us. That was a huge coup for the company.” He stopped in front of a heavy, ornately carved door made of some kind of dark hardwood. He rapped his knuckles on it three times before barging on in, while I hovered in the doorway.
So this was the suite. Taylor had been right. What a mess. We stood in what I assumed was the living room, but it was hard to tell because every available surface was covered in wrinkled clothing, pizza boxes, and empty dishes. A huge fireplace was installed in the far wall, surrounded by shelves and shelves of books. More books than I’d ever seen in one place outside a library. The fire blazed in the hearth, and I was honestly surprised there wasn’t any garbage close enough to it to catch fire. As beautiful as the house was, the mess made my skin crawl. I usually lived in shitty apartments, so I was a bit of a neat freak to balance the universe.
“Beaudry? You in here?” Taylor called. There was no answer. “He must be in the bedroom suite.” He headed to a door on the left, like it was no big deal.
Wait! You’re just going to barge into the guy’s bedroom?”
Pausing in his tracks, Taylor looked over his shoulder. “This is no ordinary bedroom. Just because there’s a bed in the corner doesn’t mean it’s some intimate setting. It’s just a giant workspace.” With that parting shot, he burst through the door, once again calling the man’s name.
Trembling from too much alcohol and not enough nerve, I stepped inside the room. I was stunned speechless by the scene before me. Taylor had one thing right—it was no ordinary bedroom. It was the size of three average rooms lined up in a row and probably had double the square footage of the apartment I was getting booted out of. There was indeed a bed, a California king canopy bed off in one corner of the room. A fire was blazing in this suite as well, only I realized that it was the same fire in the same fireplace, which apparently connected the two rooms.
Taylor stood next to what had to be the man’s workspace. There was a giant U-shaped desk adorned with four widescreen computer monitors and various other gadgets typical of an office. However, on one leg of the U, there was a collection of what looked to be every tablet, PDA, smartphone, and any other mobile device known to man. I supposed he had to test his software on each gizmo that was likely to employ it.
Behind the office area was a ginormous TV screen—at least seventy inches—that looked like it would be more at home in a movie theater. Several fluffy couches were set up in a semicircle facing it. It would be amazing to have a movie marathon in this place. And of course, there was every gaming console imaginable to go along with the screen yardage. But…despite all the cool stuff, there was some very weird stuff about the place as well. Besides the office setup and the movie area, all the furniture in the suite looked like it had been bought from a garage sale at Versailles. It was expensive-looking, obviously, but very gilded and frilly. There were also several racks flanking the giant TV that displayed the man’s sword collection.
And then, the murals. The murals were creepy. On at least a couple of the walls above the wainscoting, there were huge, garish wall paintings of nudes in various scenes. Men and women, sometimes in sexual situations, sometimes just hanging out or whatever. But they weren’t like Renaissance or fine art nudes or anything; they seemed to be done by just some random modern artist. I had no idea how the guy could manage to look at them all day every day. Though if it weren’t for those, I’d never leave a place like this either. Speaking of the guy, though, there was no sign of him.
“Where is he?” I was whispering again. It just seemed like the thing to do when you snuck into someone’s bedroom at night. Not that we were really sneaking, but still.
As if in answer to my question, we heard a toilet flush, and a door to my right that I hadn’t even noticed swung open, startling me. The person who came through was pretty much just as unbelievable as the house he lived in. He was tall—very tall—and lanky, but with wide shoulders and well-defined musculature. His hair was just a little too long, like maybe he’d forgotten his last couple of haircuts, and very dark, shot through with a tiny bit of gray. It had to be premature because I doubted he was much more than ten years older than me. His facial features—though thrown in deep shadow because of the low light in the room—were chiseled and angular, too handsome to be fair to the rest of the world. Wire-rimmed glasses perched on the tip of his straight nose, slightly askew. Despite the handsomeness, he had dark circles under his eyes and frown lines around his mouth, as if he hadn’t slept in weeks. And he was wearing Angry Birds pajamas.
When he saw me, his deep-set blue eyes widened and he flinched like I’d snuck up on him. “Who the hell are you?”
I let out a squeaky gasp and backed away toward Taylor because the guy looked fucking scary when he turned on the full force of that scowl.
“Jesus Christ, Beaudry, relax,” Taylor said. He picked up his briefcase and pulled out a legal-size envelope. “This is my friend Mackenzie. I was driving him home, and I just popped in to drop off these contracts from Harrelson.”
Beaudry grunted and crossed the room to sit at his desk. He waved a hand in the vague direction of a stack of shelves. “Just put them in the inbox. I’ll deal with them later.”
“If you look them over now, I can take back any questions or return them…”
He glared at Taylor over his shoulder, and Taylor wisely shut his mouth. Then the man’s gaze settled on me. It wasn’t the scowl he’d given me earlier, but it wasn’t exactly a…nice expression either. It was more of an assessing glare than anything. “Welcome to Chatham House, Mackenzie. What do you think?” he asked.
I had no idea what he meant. What did I think of the house? The room? Him? “It’s…impressive. The artwork is…unusual.”
He let out a belting laugh that I hadn’t been expecting, so I jumped, but then the rich baritone of it made my toes curl. It was an odd reaction, as I wasn’t usually affected by such things.
“Unusual is a kind way of putting it. The artwork came with the house, along with much of the furniture. I just haven’t gotten around to redecorating.”
“Oh, that’s…” . “How long have you lived here, then?”
Beaudry turned back to his computer and began typing furiously. “About five years,” he answered without turning back around.
I choked on air, and Taylor snorted. “I think by ‘haven’t gotten around to it,’ you mean ‘just don’t give a shit,’” he muttered.
“TouchĂ©, Mr. Morrison. Is there anything else you need?”
Taylor sighed, probably realizing that the man was not going to look at whatever was in the envelope while we were still there to relay any messages back to Mindstream. He clamped a hand around my wrist and started dragging me toward the door. “All right, we’re going. Remember, drinks at the King’s Shield next Friday.”
“I don’t think I’m going to be—”
Taylor spoke right over Beaudry’s muttering. “You already said you would. No backsies. I can pick you up.”
“I think I’d enjoy driving my shiny Lotus instead, but thank you very much for the offer,” Beaudry growled. “Nice meeting you, Mack,” I heard him call through the open door.
“Nickname basis already?” I laughed to Taylor.
“That has nothing to do with nicknames and everything to do with your name being too long for him to remember.”

Purchase

J.K. Hogan | Amazon


Meet the Author

                                                          
J.K. Hogan has been telling stories for as long as she can remember, beginning with writing cast lists and storylines for her toys growing up. When she finally decided to put pen to paper, magic happened. She is greatly inspired by all kinds of music and often creates a “soundtrack” for her stories as she writes them. J.K. is hoping to one day have a little something for everyone, so she’s branched out from m/f paranormal romance and added m/m contemporary romance. Who knows what’s next? J.K. resides in North Carolina, where she was born and raised. A true southern girl at heart, she lives in the country with her husband and two sons, a cat, and two champion agility dogs. If she isn’t on the agility field, J.K. can often be found chasing waterfalls in the mountains with her husband, or down in front at a blues concert. In addition to writing, she enjoys training and competing in dog sports, spending time with her large southern family, camping, boating and, of course, reading! For more information, please visit www.jkhogan.com.

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